The President of Indonesia, Joko Widodo, attended a ground-breaking ceremony on March 1, 2023, for the construction of a hydropower plant that will cost USD 2.6 billion and will be connected to an industrial zone in North Kalimantan. PT Kayan Hydropower Nusantara, a joint venture between Indonesia’s PT Kayan Patria Pratama Group and Malaysia’s Sarawak Energy Bhd, is responsible for the 1.375-gigawatt power plant’s development. The planned industrial park will focus on electric vehicle and battery factories, as well as aluminium and petrochemical facilities.
During the ceremony, Joko Widodo said that the hydropower project, expected to take seven years to complete, will supply electricity to the proposed industrial park. He also stressed his commitment to shifting Indonesia’s economy towards a green economy.
Indonesia is a significant producer of thermal coal, which is its primary source of energy generation. However, the country aims to reduce its reliance on polluting fuel and achieve net-zero emissions by 2060. To achieve this, Indonesia has set a target of increasing the proportion of renewable energy in its energy mix to 23% by 2025, up from its current level of about 12%. Nonetheless, environmentalists have raised concerns that dams, although less polluting than coal, can still have negative impacts on ecosystems, such as disrupting water and sediment flows.
(Source: Zawya & Kontan)